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Draft pick's dad says Tampa Bay Rays didn't negotiate in good faith

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August

UPDATE, 6:03: Reached by the Times on Wednesday, LeVon said they had nothing to else to say.  "I'm done with it,'' he said. "It's a business. It was their choice. I'll be back in the draft next year.''

DEVELOPING: Top draft pick LeVon Washington's family broke their silence after failing to sign by Monday's deadline and accused the Rays of not negotiating in good faith.

Washington's father, Victor, told the Gainesville Sun / Gatorsports.com the Rays didn't abide by a pre-draft agreement and  wouldn"t "budge" from their offer of slot value (estimated at $1.08-million) and said "I'm convinced that they didn't want to sign him.''

The Rays replied with a statement from spokesman Rick Vaughn: "We do not comment on specifics of negotiations but we definitely had every intention of signing LeVon and wish him all the best going forward.''

On Monday the Rays said the gap in negotiations was too large. The Sun also reported that Washington failed to meet academic requirements to attend Florida and would be looking to play at a junior college, which would allow him to re-enter the draft next season.

SportsIllustrated.com's Jon Heyman reported the Rays offered $1.1-million.

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:50am]

    

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